The Highest-Paid Musicians Of 2015

By on December 22, 2015 in ArticlesMusic News

It's Katy Perry's world, y'all, so sit back and let the queen reign supreme. This year's highest-paid musician and Super Bowl halftime act crisscrossed the world on her Prismatic tour. In the music industry today, touring is where you make the money. She adds to her earnings with endorsement deals from Covergirl, Coty, and Claire's. Perry grossed more than $2 million per city on her 126-stop tour for an amazing $135 million overall. Only Ed Sheeran, who clocks in at number 12, played more concert dates. Sheeran made 154 stops on his latest tour, which was good for $57 million. And only Taylor Swift, who clocks in at number 4 with $80 million, grossed more per city. Her 1989 tour pulled in a stellar $4 million per stop. Interestingly, much of the income from Swift's current tour will count towards next year's list, making her a top contender for the 2016 crown with the money her world stadium tour in still bringing in. (The last date for the tour is December 12th in Melbourne, Australia.)

There are two different couples on this highest-paid list. Jay-Z and Beyoncé come in at 13 and 14 respectively. However, Taylor Swift and her DJ boyfriend Calvin Harris rank higher at numbers four and six. Former couple Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert didn't make the list of the top 30, but they both earned more than $25 million each.

With a woman topping the list and a woman clocking in at number four, it looks like a good year for the ladies. It really wasn't overall. There are only six females in the top 30 and that's counting Fleetwood Mac's Stevie Nicks and Christine McVie.

Last year's top earning musician, Dr. Dre, fell to number 30 this year, at $33 million. Last year's astronomical $620 million in earnings was due largely to the Beats by Dr. Dre sale.

An astounding 31 different musical acts made more than $30 million this year and 38 made more than $25 million. It was a good year for music and a great year for concert tours with everyone from Garth Brooks, to The Eagles, to The Foo Fighters hitting the road to sing for their suppers. Here are the top 30, highest-earning musicians of 2015.

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

1. Katy Perry – $135 million

2. One Direction – $130 million

3. Garth Brooks – $90 million

4. Taylor Swift – $80 million

5. The Eagles – $73.5 million

6. Calvin Harris – $66 million

7. Justin Timberlake – $63.5 million

8. Diddy – $60 million

9. Fleetwood Mac – $59.5 million

10. Lady Gaga – $59 million

11. The Rolling Stones – $57.5 million

12. Ed Sheeran – $57 million

13. Jay-Z – $56 million

14. Beyonce – $54.5 milliom

15. Elton John – $53.5 million

16. Toby Keith – $53 million

17. Paul McCartney – $51.5 million

18. Michael Buble – $45.5 million

19. Jason Aldean – $43.5 million

20. Luke Bryan – $42.5 million

21. Kenny Chesney – $42 million

22. Bruno Mars – $40 million

23. Drake – $39.5 million

24. (tie) Foo Fighters – $38 million

24. (tie) Tim McGraw – $38 million

26. David Guetta – $37 million

27. Florida Georgia Line – $36.5 million

28. (tie) Jimmy Buffett – $36 million

28. (tie) Tiesto – $36 million

30. (tie) Maroon 5 – $33 million

30. (tie) Dr. Dre – $33 million

Articles Written by Amy Lamare
Amy Lamare is a Los Angeles based writer covering business, technology, entertainment, philanthropy, and pop culture. She spent 8 1/2 years covering the entertainment industry for She has written for Los Angeles Magazine, Your Tango, Thinknum Media, and various airline magazines. Follow her on Facebook. Amy's favorite self-made billionaire is Sara Blakely.
Did we make a mistake?
Submit a correction suggestion and help us fix it!
Submit a Correction